Therapy as Ceremony: Decolonizing and Indigenizing Our Practice

  • Karlee D. FellnerEmail author
Part of the International and Cultural Psychology book series (ICUP)


The current chapter explores the concept of therapy as ceremony as one approach to decolonizing and Indigenizing therapeutic practice with Indigenous clients. From this perspective, therapy as ceremony moves through four overarching phases, including preparation, creating a sacred space through the therapeutic relationship, the therapeutic journey of healing and transformation, and closing and moving forward through learning, reflecting, and acting. Within this framework, the current chapter presents a course of therapy with a young First Nations man, Dominic. A number of important considerations are presented for case conceptualization and intervention. The chapter guides readers in how to actively develop culturally relevant practice with Indigenous clients through micro-, meso-, and macrolevel interventions and considerations.


Indigenous Aboriginal Therapy Counselling Culture Colonization Decolonization 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Indigenous Education Counselling Psychology, Werklund School of EducationUniversity of CalgaryCalgaryCanada

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